Wednesday 21 February 2018

Deputy State Pathologist resigns in wake of extraordinary attack on Prof Marie Cassidy

Dr Khalid Jaber tendered resignation following discussions with Department of Justice

State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy Photo Garrett White/ Collins
State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy Photo Garrett White/ Collins
Deputy State Pathologist Khalid Jaber (centre) accompanied by two gardai recently at a scene of crime

THE Deputy State Pathologist, Dr Khalid Jaber, has resigned in the wake of an extraordinary attack on State Pathologist Prof Marie Cassidy.

Dr Jaber (55) tendered his resignation following discussions with Department of Justice secretary general Brian Purcell.

His resignation was confirmed by the Department of Justice, who issued a statement at 12.30pm today.

"Deputy State Pathologist Dr Khalid Jaber has tendered his resignation to the Minister for Justice and Equality," the statement said.

"Dr Jaber's resignation has been accepted with immediate effect and he has been notified accordingly."

The Saudi-born pathologist has been unhappy with the running of the Office of the State Pathologist for some time and in a series of letters criticised Dr Cassidy, suggesting she was not sufficiently qualified to hold the job.

His claims were disputed by the department, which, although declining to make any public comment on his concerns, has backed Prof Cassidy's credentials.

Dr Jaber had been coming under increasing pressure in recent days after the Irish Independent contacted the department with a series of questions after having sight of letters he wrote to the Director of Public Prosecutions and the Royal College of Physicians in Ireland.

In both letters he suggested Dr Cassidy was not qualified to hold the job as she did not have certification in forensic pathology, a sub-speciality of pathology that focuses on determining the cause of death by examining a corpse.

Dr Jaber, who moved to Ireland from the UK to take the job in 2009, had previously been at the centre of controversy following disagreements with mortuary staff.

As a result of these disagreements, bodies were not longer brought to the Dublin City Mortuary, Cork University Hospital or Our Lady's Hospital in Navan if Dr Jaber was the state pathologist on call.

Shane Phelan, Public Affairs Editor

Irish Independent

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